Wednesday, January 4, 2017

The Money Isn't Where Most People Think...

 It's already starting… 

 What, you ask? 
The panic and worry about the coming year and what will happen in the outdoor and firearms industry. 
With a Trump win, many manufacturers, accessory makers, and ammunition manufacturers and suppliers are concerned that the market for those products will not be as robust as it has been in years past. 

 To an extent, they are right. 

 It is doubtful that the industry will "contract"  due to a "lack of demand" for their products   

 True, the "panic buying" of the past decade is likely over – at least for the short term. 
 However, the normal  market for products and services will probably be about the same, if not a little bigger. 

 Being in the marketing and sales world, I'm starting to hear one of the most concerning things that I can regarding a company's future...

"We are cutting back our marketing budget because we are anticipating a smaller market and less sales compared to last year."


 This is a "hard" conversation that I've had with many clients, prospects, and customers over the years. The absolutely, positively LAST thing you should do when you anticipate a contracting of the market is to DECREASE your marketing or advertising. 
Are you DECREASING your sales quotas for your sales people? 
Are you DECREASING in the salaries of all of your employees? 

 Quite frankly, many in and out of the outdoor space just don't "get it" when it comes to actual sales, revenues, and how to generate them. 
I say this with the utmost respect. 
We, as an industry, fall about a decade behind what the normal open "Market" does and uses. 
Just think about this:
 -Many in the outdoor industry world still think that television and television advertising is the "future." 
-Popular outdoor publications continue to hang on, albeit precipitously while they attempt to throw in everything and the kitchen  sink online to try and catch up to where they should've been five or six years ago… 
- Google, the biggest company in the WORLD is now only 14 Years Old. (still think your business can depend entirely on your "years in business?")

 I don't care how good, how innovative, how fantastic your product is-- the money just isn't there.
 The money, no matter what your product, is not in the "product."

 The money is in the MARKETING.

 Don't believe me? Consider these two examples.  

1. ProActiv
 I happen to know quite a bit about this product as one of my "mentors" in the marketing world was part of the genius behind it. 
 He affectionately referred to the process of selling Proactiv as "selling goop."
Many products are sold on hype rather than quality..
You can easily make your own "goop." 
There is nothing special, unique, or innovative about the product itself. There are only four FDA approved medications that you can use to topically treat facial acne. 
 You can buy all of them at your local pharmacy. You can also buy the cleansers and creams at the same pharmacy – usually for around one third the price. 
 Proactive has sold over $1 billion of product. 
 Their "innovations?" 
 They pay highly popular celebrities massive amounts of money to endorse their products. Additionally, they sign clients up to a "self renewing" plan that automatically charges their credit card in nominal amount every 30 days and their new product is automatically shipped to their door. 

2. ShamWow. 
 You've all seen this infomercial on TV. There's even a story about the rise and fall of the infomercials star – which should be titled how to turn a $20,000 commercial into $100 million of sales – because that's what they did. 
$100 Million Dollars in sales on a $20,000 marketing expense. 
 I would call that quite the "success," wouldn't you? 
Did you buy a sham wow? 

Would you have ever bought one? 

What you should realize is your answer does not matter – millions of people can  and did, and they did so because of MARKETING. 

Why even put a sign up in front of your business?
By some companies' logic, all of these signs are unnecessary, as people "Already know them." 

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